Bill Ryan, Bob Webb, Zane Taylor and Gavin McGuane had all proved themselves as wonderful recruits. In 1982 the Magpies procured another club champion in the form of coach Norm Dare. The 72 game former Fitzroy flyer commenced his coaching career with the Lions reserves in 1978. He tasted immediate Queensland success in 1980 by coaching outsiders Kedron to their first premiership since 1959. He took the Red Legs to their last Grand Final in 1981. Dare was also the Queensland state coach from 1980-84. Southport’s recruiters had pulled off many coups over the previous decade but Dare was possibly the cost important.
By finals time it had come down to Coolangatta and Southport again. The Mike Darby lead Coolangatta Blues had gained some real momentum during the second half of the season. The Blues and the Magpies were to face off in their sixth Grand Final since 1975. It was the magpies eighth Grand Final in a row. The passionate competitiveness between the two strongest clubs on the Gold Coast was at boiling point. There had been many fierce contests between these two clubs and this had often tipped over into some unsavory violence. Magpie’s football manager Frank Atchison added some drama to the
Grand Final by stating that the Magpies would not take a backward step if the Blues engaged in violent play (Click here to read article). It was not to be the departure from the GCAFL that the Magpies wished for and probably deserved. The Grand Final was fierce and competitive, but Coolangatta were too good on the day and took out the 1982 premiership by twenty-eight points (Click here to read article). Coolangatta Ruckman Peter Guy was best on ground. Best for the Magpies were McGuane, Budge, Thompson, Lovett and Livingston.
The gloom of Grand Final day was soon wiped away as the club immediately began preparations for the metamorphism from Magpies to Sharks. In July of 1982, after 12 months of procrastination and negotiation the Southport AFC had been given approval to join the QAFL (Click here to read article). Within weeks the full membership of the club had given the green light to the change.